Bellroy Classic Backpack review: carry your laptop in style

Bellroy Classic Backpack
(Image: © Karen S. Freeman / iMore)

I've been looking for a lightweight and well-constructed backpack for carrying my laptop and other belongings when I travel or take my laptop on the go. Of course, a padded laptop pocket is a must, as well as other pockets for smaller items and plenty of room. I have found all that and more in Bellroy's Classic Backpack.

The Good

  • Streamlined and lightweight
  • Padded laptop pocket
  • iPad sleeve pocket
  • Additional small interior and exterior pockets
  • Nice size
  • Professional-looking
  • Padded back and straps designed for comfort

The Bad

  • Pricey
  • No water bottle pocket

No compromises

Bellroy Classic Backpack: What I like

iMore Best Award

(opens in new tab)

I've been shopping for a good laptop backpack for a long time, but most on the market require some compromises. Bellroy's Classic Backpack doesn't compromise between functionality, style, and comfort. I cannot carry a heavy bag, and this one is lightweight and has just about every feature I could want.

There is a roomy, padded interior pocket for any brand laptop up to 15-inch. The bottom of the pocket is padded, which seems like an obvious must, but I have certainly seen laptop backpacks without any padding there. Additionally, there is a smaller sleeve pocket that easily houses an iPad. Inside the front portion, there is a small zippered pocket for accessories. On the outside, there is a tiny hidden pocket for valuables at the top near the grab handle.

The main section of the bag is plenty roomy. This is a 17L backpack, which certainly isn't the largest you can find, but it's a nice medium size. It measures 20 in x 14.5 in x 3 in / 490mm x 370mm x 70 mm. Bellroy makes both larger and smaller bags if this isn't the just-right size for you.

Bellroy's Classic Backpack has well-padded straps and back and is designed to hug the body so it's comfortable to wear even when it's packed. The bag is constructed from water-resistant nylon and highlighted with the environmentally certified premium top-grain leather that Bellroy is known for. The style is simple, streamlined, modern, and professional. It comes in six different colors: Mid Grey, Black, Ash, Ink Blue, Moss Grey, and Red Ochre.

Quality doesn't come cheap

Bellroy Classic Backpack: What I don't like

Unsurprisingly, a bag of this quality is not cheap. I think it's worth its price, but that's a decision each person has to make.

If I have any complaints about the design, it would be a lack of an exterior water bottle pocket. Of course, that would detract from the streamlined look, so perhaps that's intentional.

Overall great laptop backpack

Bellroy Classic Backpack: Bottom line

This is one high-quality laptop bag with plenty of features, style, quality, and comfort. With room for a 15-inch laptop, iPad, and much more, it's the perfect size for a day trip or airplane carry-on.

See at Bellroy (opens in new tab)

Karen S Freeman

Karen is a contributor to as a writer, social media manager, and co-host of the iMore Show. She’s been writing about Apple since 2010 with a year-long break to work at an Apple Store as a product specialist. Before joining iMore in 2018, Karen wrote for AppAdvice and WatchAware. She’s an early adopter who used to wait in long lines on release days before pre-ordering made things much easier. Karen is a wife and mom (and dog mom) who is also a part-time teacher and occasional movie extra. She loves to travel the world and is always looking for portable tech and accessories so she can work from anywhere.